Episode 61 - Is There a Best Time to Fast?
There are many variations to fasting and it’s all about finding the time that works best with your schedule. There is no right or wrong fasting time but more importantly it’s about finding times that you can do consistently.
As you move forward in your fasting journey here are a few tips…
- Hunger waves will come and go (be patient and take your mind off of fasting by staying busy)
- If you are doing a longer fast pick a day that you are busy, out of the house and/or traveling.
- Only tell supportive people regarding your fasting regimen
Here is a quick summary of the popular variations which I have included in this guide for you to choose from:
This involves skipping breakfast and restricting your daily eating period to 8 hours, such as 12–8 p.m. Then you fast for 16 hours in between. This method takes advantage of the overnight fast. You can also adjust your window depending on your schedule for the day and when you eat your most important meals. This method should be very doable for long term sustainability.
Perhaps after a month or two of doing 16/8, you can sprinkle in some days of fasting for 20 hours and eating within a 4-hour window. It is good to keep the body guessing in order to make you more metabolically flexible. This 4-hour window could be one big meal or two small ones. This way of eating could also be used on a daily basis if 16/8 wasn’t achieving your body/health goals.
This could be a transition from 16/8 or 20/4 which would consist of one meal a day which could be at any hour of the day (ex. Dinner to dinner). Sometimes individuals don’t like to squeeze all their calories in a 1-2 hour time frame and I would just make sure you do not eat too late and close to bedtime. I would say this is geared for weight loss and probably not for someone who is looking to gain muscle. This is not for everyone but could be great for sedentary people who want to lose weight. If you’re not working out at all or do it only a few times a week then you don’t really need to eat more often either. OMAD is not ideal if you’re an older person or trying to build muscle/mass. The elderly should eat more often (16/8) because it’s harder for them to maintain muscle.
Alternate Day Fasting
(36 hour fast): This involves fasting for approximately 36 hours. For example, if you eat dinner on day 1, you would fast for all of day 2 and not eat again until breakfast on day 3. For some people, this might be a bit extreme but if you have plateaued in your weight loss journey perhaps adding in a few 36-hour fasts would help. Also, I recommend fasting on days when you have a busy schedule and aren’t sitting at home. Drinking water with minerals is highly recommended too.
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